US-Soldaten in Afghanistan




"Russia-Ukraine Fallout Won’t Threaten Security Of EU Gas Supply"

Das Energiewirtschaftliche Institut an der Universität zu Köln (EWI) ist Tsvetana Paraskova zufolge in einer Studie zu dem Schluss gekommen, dass die Gasversorgung Europas vom andauernden Disput über den Transport von russischem Erdgas durch die Ukraine nicht beeinträchtigt werden wird. "Even if Russia and Ukraine were to fail to reach an agreement on the natural gas transit through Ukraine onto Europe, the security of gas supply in the European Union (EU) will not be materially threatened, the Institute of Energy Economics (EWI) at the University of Cologne said in a study on Wednesday. The current ten-year gas transit agreement between Russia and Ukraine expires on December 31, 2019. The parties need to reach a new agreement by that date to set the terms of deliveries of Russian gas to Europe via Ukraine’s territory. (…) Even if talks fail to reach an agreement and gas supply via Ukraine is interrupted, as it was in 2009, the EU will not see its gas supply security threatened because of sufficient infrastructure, good market integration, storage inventories high enough to handle additional withdrawals, and liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports, according to the study."

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"The Inevitable Finale Of The Nord Stream 2 Saga"

Der Ausgang der "Nord-Stream-2-Saga" ist nach Ansicht des Energieexperten Vanand Meliksetian schon aus wirtschaftlichen Gründen unausweichlich. "European production is decreasing dramatically, primarily due to the depletion of old gas fields. Also, political motives hamper production such as in the Netherlands where tremors, allegedly due to gas extraction, have reduced political support for the industry. Europe’s biggest single gas deposit, the Groningen field in the Netherlands, will cease operations in 2022. The closure of this gas giant was another reason to support the construction of NS2. (…) Especially Germany, which intends to shut down its nuclear and coal power plants by 2022 and 2038 respectively, requires a steady supply of cheap natural gas to fill the gap and supplement intermittent renewables. Although there is sufficient LNG import capacity available across Europe, cheap piped gas remains the most sensible economic choice for businesses. (…) Almost 150 bcm of natural gas is required to fill Europe’s demand gap until 2025 (…) and Russia is the only producer with the necessary capacity to become a swing producer. Ukraine’s infrastructure remains vital for Moscow’s strategy to increase exports to the continent and strengthen its position as a strategic and vital energy supplier. The construction of NS2 may have been a blow for Kyiv, but the European market is poised to change significantly over the next couple of years and Ukraine still holds plenty of power in this game."

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"The Key To Iran’s Success In The Face Of Sanctions"

Dem Iran ist es Simon Harlow zufolge in den vergangenen Monaten gelungen, die Benzin-Produktion zu erhöhen und damit eine der schmerzhaftesten Folgen der US-Sanktionen zu umgehen. "One of the most humiliating aspects for Iran of the last sanctions era was that it was dependent on the whim of the U.S. for gasoline just to keep its vehicles moving, Mehrdad Emadi, head of risk analysis and energy derivatives markets consultancy, Betamatrix, in London, told 'At the time that the new sanctions were introduced last year [by the U.S.], Iran was absolutely determined not to be in the dependent position again, which is why it has pushed ahead so determinedly with the PGSR [Persian Gulf Star Refinery], and why Iran is now not just self-sufficient for gasoline but is actually looking to ramp up its export capacity,' he added. (…) Given the U.S.’s apparent withdrawal from all Middle East interests, except – albeit tenuously, Saudi Arabia – Iran believes that it is only a matter of time before sanctions are loosened up, if not entirely removed by the U.S. Tehran also believes that even before this is effected by the U.S. European firms will re-engage with Iran, in the first instance in the petchems sector."

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"Will The U.S. Slap Sanctions On Nord Stream 2?"

Im US-Kongress mehren sich Nick Cunningham zufolge die Stimmen, die Sanktionen gegen die geplante Nord-Stream-2-Gaspipeline fordern, um den Export von amerikanischem Flüssiggas nach Europa zu erleichtern. "U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry has likened U.S. gas to American soldiers liberating Europe from the Nazis. 'The United States is again delivering a form of freedom to the European continent,' he told reporters in Brussels earlier this month. 'And rather than in the form of young American soldiers, it’s in the form of liquefied natural gas.' (...) The U.S. government may offer a lifeline to gas exporters in Texas and Louisiana by targeting Nord Stream 2. Recently, Sec. Perry predicted that U.S. sanctions on Nord Stream 2 were coming in the 'not too distant future.' Sanctions would hit companies working on the project. It may or may not be a coincidence that some of the biggest proponents of sanctioning Nord Stream 2 hail from Texas, home to a growing number of LNG export terminals. (...) The overarching motivation for American politicians in targeting Nord Stream 2 continues to be geopolitical – reducing European dependence on Russian gas. However, cutting down on Russia’s market share in Europe over the long run would also have major implications for the billions of dollars’ worth of investments along the U.S. Gulf Coast."

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"The World’s Most Geopolitically Charged Pipeline"

Die Nord-Stream-Pipeline in der Ostsee kann heute aus geopolitischer Sicht als umstrittenste Gasleitung der Welt betrachtet werden, schreibt Tim Daiss. Trotz der sicherheitspolitischen Kontroversen deute bisher alles darauf hin, dass das Projekt termingerecht abgeschlossen werden wird. "The way forward, for some EU countries already tired of Russian interference and geopolitical hegemony using the gas weapon in the region, including Poland and several Baltic states, will be to procure more U.S.-sourced LNG, as well as from Qatar and other players. To this end, however, LNG is currently and will be in the future at a decided pricing disadvantage compared to cheaper Russian pipeline gas. Finally, Germany has also indicated recently, likely bowing to pressure from Trump, that it will expand its LNG infrastructure, including signing more LNG deals with U.S. producers. While this will not be enough to nullify the enormous stakes and risks of an operational Nord Stream 2 pipeline, it will at least offer marginal diversity of supply."

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"Why Russia Isn’t Worried About Lower Oil Prices"

Nick Cunningham erläutert, warum sich Russland im Gegensatz zu Saudi-Arabien keine großen Sorgen über die gefallenen Ölpreise macht. "One of the key reasons is that the Russian currency is flexible, so it weakens when oil prices fall. That cushions the blow during a downturn, allowing Russian oil companies to pay expenses in weaker rubles while still taking in U.S. dollars for oil sales. Second, tax payments for Russian oil companies are structured in such a way that their tax burden is lighter with lower oil prices. (...) Russia is more stoic in the face of an oil price meltdown. 'The drop in oil prices hardly bother us because our budget is based on $42 a barrel,' First Deputy Prime Minister Anton Siluanov told reporters in Moscow on December 26. 'The price can stay around $40-$50 for a time -- six months or a year,' Siluanov said, before adding: 'We think this won’t last long.' But even if the price downturn does persist, Russia won’t be in trouble because of its ample foreign exchange reserves, he said."

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"Russia Takes Major Leap In European Gas War"

Vanand Meliksetian bezeichnet die feierlich vollzogene Fertigstellung des ersten "Turk Stream"-Abschnitts als wichtigen russischen Fortschritt im "Europäischen Gaskrieg". Das Projekt sei von Gazprom aufgrund des europäischen Widerstands gegen die geplante "South Stream"-Pipeline in Angriff genommen worden und erweise sich nun als voller Erfolg. "Although Turk Stream’s capacity is half compared to South Stream’s, the pipeline has the potential to significantly impact European markets. Despite efforts by Brussels to halt Russian projects in Europe, Moscow seems assured that it will succeed: Nord Stream 2 is already under construction, Turk Stream’s first string is nearly completed, and the second one will follow soon. What is striking in the case of the second string, is the scrambling by Greek, Bulgarian, and Italian companies and politicians to receive natural gas from the Turk Stream pipeline. With every passing day it becomes ever more likely that these pipelines will be completed."

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"Russia Just Won Big In The European Gas War"

Die EU-Kommission und Gazprom haben bei ihrer Einigung im Streit um unfaire Geschäftspraktiken des russischen Energieunternehmens auf schwere Milliardenstrafen verzichtet. Für Russland sei dies ein großer Sieg im andauernden "Europäischen Gaskrieg", meint Tim Daiss. "It’s a win situation for Gazprom since its agreement avoids billions of dollars in penalties that could have been levied by the European Commission; while it also helps the firm solidify its hold on European gas markets. It’s also a victory for Russia overall which has seen several LNG players, notably Qatar and the U.S., vie for market share at the expense of Russian gas producers. Even before the Gazprom deal, it would have been hard for U.S. producers to take significant market share in Europe away from Russia, mostly due to pure energy economics. (...) With Russia’s vast natural gas pipeline network in place bringing gas from is massive fields to EU markets and with the advantage of pricing and even the geopolitical advantage since most EU members see U.S.-sourced gas as a tool of the Trump administration, Russian gas and the lack of energy security that accompanies that supply will remain a reality in both the mid to long-term."

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"EU Could Switch To Euros In Oil Trade With Iran"

Die EU erwägt einem Bericht zufolge offenbar, ihre Ölgeschäfte mit dem Iran künftig nicht mehr in US-Dollar abzuwickeln. "Iran, for its part, said as early as in mid-April that it would be switching to euros from U.S. dollars in reporting foreign currency amounts, to reduce the reliance on the dollar as it was expected that President Trump would not waive the sanctions this time around. (...) The EU’s pledge to continue trading with Iran comes as Europe continues to buy Iranian oil, but some refiners and traders are flagging financing issues as having the potential to stop crude trade with Iran. Another big hurdle to Iran’s crude oil exports could be issues with the insurance of tankers carrying oil out of Iran, experts have warned, while some shipping companies are already refusing to commit tankers to new Iranian cargoes, for fear of complications in the cargo and insurance related payments."

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"Is This The Geopolitical Shift Of The Century?"

Die geopolitischen Realitäten im Nahen Osten veränderten sich gegenwärtig in "dramatischer" Art und Weise, stellt Cyril Widdershoven fest. Die westliche Hegemonie in der Region gehe zu Ende, stattdessen werde Russland von vielen Regierungen als potentieller strategischer Partner wahrgenommen. "In stark contrast to the difficult relationship of the West with the Arab world, Moscow seems to be playing the regional power game at a higher level. It can become an ally or friend to regional adversaries, such as Iran, Turkey, Egypt and now Saudi Arabia. Arab regimes are also willing to discuss cooperation with Russia, even though the country is supporting adversaries in the Syrian and Yemen conflicts and continues to supply arms to the Shi’a regime in Iran. (...) King Salman’s trip could go down in history as the point of no return for the West. Pictures of Russian President Vladimir Putin and King Salman of Saudi Arabia could replace historic pictures of King Saud and U.S. President Roosevelt (Bitter Lake, 1945)."

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"Russia Is Finally Making Headway In Its Pivot East"

Colin Chilcoat berichtet über neue Fortschritte bei der Umsetzung der russischen Strategie eines energiepolitischen Schwenks in Richtung Asien. In den Beziehungen zu China gebe es zwar nach wie vor nur wenige substantielle Fortschritte, dafür gebe es neue Hinweise auf eine engere Kooperation mit Indien und Ländern in Südostasien. "As the pivot develops, the number of interesting subplots in the Asia Pacific region and at home have grown too great to count. Russia’s nuclear and LNG courtships of the likes of Vietnam, Cambodia, and Thailand to name a few are something to watch. As is Russia and Japan’s ongoing territorial dispute over the Kuril Islands. Relations between the two countries are warming and a resolution may only be an energy deal or two away. (...) As China demonstrates its willingness to wait, Russia is still seeking to define what has been a meandering, hardly predictable, though moderately successful path east."

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"Will Russia End Up Controlling 73% of Global Oil Supply?"

Russland sei dabei, die Führung in einem neuen Ölkartell zu übernehmen, das aus geopolitischer Sicht ein "Desaster" wäre, schreibt Rakesh Upadhyay. "Though both Russia and Saudi Arabia are on opposing ends in Syria, with Russia supporting Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad and the Saudis supporting the Sunni rebels, the large drop in prices seems to have opened a window of opportunity for Russia to ally with Saudi Arabia. (...) Russia is smart. Vladimir Putin is genius. Moscow senses the opportunity that is almost tangibly floating about in the low crude price environment and appears to be ready to capitalize on it in a way that would reshape the geopolitical landscape exponentially. Though a solution in Syria is welcome, a large cartel of major oil producing nations of the world with Russia as the head would be a major upset to the current balance of power. With this potential in mind, the mid-march meeting should be very interesting for the global oil patch — well beyond talk of production cuts and supply gluts."

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"Saudi Arabia: A Weak Kingdom On Its Knees?"

Das gegenwärtige Auftreten Saudi-Arabiens sei auf mehrere Entwicklungen zurückzuführen, die das Königreich langfristig zu schwächen drohen, schreibt Tom Kool. Ein offener Krieg mit dem Iran bleibe trotzdem unwahrscheinlich. "1. Saudi Arabia losing its leadership in the OPEC (...) 2. Burning through reserves—fast (...) By the most optimistic opinion, Saudi Arabia can survive low oil prices only for four years. 3. Iran has assumed a very significant leadership role among Shia Arabs (...) 4. Saudi Arabia cannot defeat Iran in a direct war (...) 5. Saudi Arabia knows it won't have U.S. support for a direct war with Iran (...) At the end of the day, Saudi Arabia has overextended itself, and overestimated its prowess and it does not have the clout that it once had to be able to do this effectively. If you're wondering whether there will be an all-out war between Saudi Arabia and Iran, it's unlikely. At this point, the Saudis are likely to continue the proxy war and hope that the Iranians do something foolish to upset the nuclear deal with the West. Until then, Saudi Arabia will make a lot of noise and attempt subversive activities, but nothing more."

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"Is Saudi Arabia Leaving The U.S. Behind For Russia?"

Robert Berke untersucht die sicherheitspolitischen und wirtschaftlichen Hintergründe der jüngsten Annäherung zwischen Russland und Saudi-Arabien. "The two sides also plan on setting up working groups to study other possible energy joint ventures in Russia. Russia also agreed to the construction of railways and metro subways for the Saudis. Russia is also believed to have agreed to supply advanced military defense equipment to the Kingdom, despite the Saudis being long time arms customers of both the UK and U.S. However there is quite a bit of doubt that the U.S. is ready to just step aside and be replaced by Russia as the Saudis’ main ally. Saudi Arabia and Russia are on opposite sides on a range of geopolitical issues, including Iran, Syria, and Yemen. These conflicts will likely put a limit on any potential entente."

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"New Silk Road Could Open Up Massive Investment Opportunities"

Robert Berke verfolgt in dieser sechsteiligen Artikelreihe die überraschend schnell voranschreitende Entstehung der "Neuen Seidenstraße", mit der China sein wirtschaftliches "Imperium" mit Europa verbinden wolle. "If the rush by nations to join the Chinese sponsored Asian International Infrastructure Bank (AIIB) is any indication, the world is becoming ever more engaged with China’s New Silk Road. To westerners used to lengthy, multi-decade delays in giant government projects, progress on the Silk Road project is taking place at an astonishing pace. Hardly a day goes by without an announcement of some new project that is set to soon break ground."

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"Russian Sanctions Might Be Obama’s Greatest Blunder"

Der Energieexperte Robert Berke hält die amerikanische Sanktionspolitik gegen Russland für einen der größten außenpolitischen Fehler der US-Regierung. Russland sei nun dabei, sich langfristig China zuzuwenden und damit Amerikas größten Rivalen zu stärken. "Over the last two years, the two countries have completed a $700 billion agreement for Russia to deliver energy to China, amounting to about 17% of Chinese annual supply, for a period covering twenty years, with China financing much of the initial costs of pipeline construction. What Russia has done, in that one move, is to help repair a major hole in China’s military armor, making it invulnerable to a U.S. cut-off of sea bourn energy supplies, which until now was one of the greatest fears of Chinese military strategists. From the Chinese perspective, this is a gift that fulfills its wildest dreams. It’s also a gift that could severely undermine the West's plans to deliver expensive Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) to China and Asia, while already facing competition from Qatar and Australia LNG, will now also run up against Russian pipeline gas through China. That can’t be wise policy for the U.S."

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Europa, Asien, Afrika, Amerika und weltweite Phänomene und Institutionen. Die bpb bietet ein breites Angebot zu internationalen Themen.

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Wo gibt es Kriege und Gewaltkonflikte? Und wo herrscht am längsten Frieden? Welches Land gibt am meisten für Rüstung aus? liefert wichtige Daten und Fakten zu Krieg und Frieden.

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Innerstaatliche Konflikte

Vom Kosovo nach Kolumbien, von Somalia nach Süd-Thailand: Weltweit schwelen über 280 politische Konflikte. Und immer wieder droht die Lage gewaltsam zu eskalieren.

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